TikTok is Coming to B2B. Are You Ready?
The Article in 60 Seconds
B2B tech businesses rely heavily on LinkedIn as the number one social media platform of choice. Trailing far behind LinkedIn, B2B tech companies use YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram to a lesser degree.
How do you maximize these for social media channels for your business? Should you even build accounts for the other 190? Is it worth your time? And what about TikTok?
In this article, we look at:
- Three essential behaviors on social platforms, whatever you use
- Two ways you can use TikTok now and not lose your brand
Think About This
In 2019, TikTok was the third most downloaded non-gaming app in the world with over 1.5 billion downloads. Almost a quarter of online U.S. adults say they have come across videos posted on TikTok.
TikTok users are getting older: 10-19 – 32.5%, 20-29 – 29.5%, 30-39 – 16.4%, 40-49 – 13.9%, 50+ – 7.1%.
A user opens the TikTok app 8 times per day.
TikTok users average 52 minutes per day on the app.
The most common publishing cadence for social media marketers is three-to-four times per week. TikTok’s algorithm favors those who post multiple times per day.
Three Essential Behaviors on Social Media
Your Leaders Need to Post Themselves
Social corollary #1: People follow people, not brands.
Social corollary #2: When people follow brands, they are really following the personality behind the brand’s feed.
Many companies have a team posting on the CEO’s feed as well as the corporate feed. These posts most often come off detached. If your leaders want to speak into the market and influence customers, they need to create their own social content.
If reticent, offer training. If too busy—and who’s not—work with your C-Suite to schedule time on their calendars to create the content for your team to then clean up and post.
This is an area where the CMO can lead the rest of the organization. Show your fellow members of senior leadership how it’s done and why it matters.
Social is a Dialogue
Don’t Just Create a News Feed
You may be producing great content on your YouTube channel, podcast, and blog. But if you’re only posting about the content from the other channels and not making content specifically for social media, you’re leaving a lot of opportunity on the table. Create a mix. These articles will help you brainstorm what content to post:
- Social Media Marketing for B2B Tech Companies
- B2B SaaS Social Media When Your Prospects are Researching
- How to Grow Your Social Media Following in a B2B World
Reward Those Who Comment and Repost
Score your social media feeds like this:
- 1 point for creating a post
- 2 points for receiving a like
- 5 points for getting a comment
- 10 points for having a follower repost your material
Why? Because when engagement is worth far more than just posting. When someone does anything with your post, reward it with social love of your own. At a minimum:
- Follow back
- Like their comment
- Reply to their comment
- Interact with their repost
Engagement is worth far more than just posting
Want to get more creative with your more highly engaged followers?
- Send digital gift cards (i.e., Starbucks, Amazon, etc.)
- Invite them to join an exclusive Facebook or LinkedIn group
- Direct message your news releases to them the day before you post them publicly
- Once more are traveling, invite them to come to your office for a tour if in town
If you want to invest more, create an item of swag someone can only get when they do certain things online. Your biggest fans will love getting a gift in the mail and will photograph themselves with your brand and post it on social. (Which you then repost and like and amplify yourself. You get the picture?)
Video Matters More than Ever
I bet everyone you know under the age of 70 carries a high quality video camera and production suite with them at all times. The time has come to unleash and unrestrict your marketing team (and why not every employee) to create branded videos for you. In addition to showing off your logo on their clothing or talking about your solution, you could bring life to your team by creating video-based themes for your social channels.
- A day in the life of your company
- Meet a team member
- Public clip from an internal presentation
- Best breakroom in the building
- Favorite socks to wear working from home
- Every dog in your company (or cat or parakeet or snake)
- Create your own desk challenge (e.g., business card forts)
- Dance challenge
I’m sure you could come up with 100 suggestions of your own.
If you want to know more about creating video, we’ve got you covered.
How to Use TikTok and Not Lose Your Brand
Facebook started with college students only and is now known as the network for 45+. Nearly 40% of all users are over 45. TikTok’s age revolution is happening even faster. Now, 1 in 3 TikTok users is over 30.
Every niche from army veterans to zookeepers is represented on TikTok. And more B2B industries are jumping on board. What didn’t make sense a year ago is now an opportunity for you to differentiate yourself.
Snackable Content is Here to Stay
Pre-recorded TikTok videos are all short, but the average session length for a user is longer than ten minutes. Plus, the average user is on the platform longer than 51 minutes per day.
Digital marketing expert Moby Siddique spoke at INBOUND 2020 and recommended B2B brands limit each video to under 30 seconds, 15 seconds is even better.
Why? That’s just enough time to deliver a single point and a supporting fact before the user wants to move on to the next video. Plus, by watching a single video from you, TikTok’s algorithm is more likely to show the viewer more videos from you.
I’m sure you’ve heard that Microsoft reports our attention spans are shorter than that of a goldfish. Around 9 seconds. This is the place to lean into that reality.
You Already Have the Content You Need for Hundreds of TikTok Videos
If you’ve been blogging with any frequency, you have everything you need to create TikTok videos for weeks. Sort your blogposts and look at the ten with the highest traffic. Go through those posts and copy and paste the big points into a new document. Each point is enough content for a TikTok video.
Now, shape that content for delivery on the platform. I am NOT saying create a script. You want the TikTok video to feel authentic.
- How can you grab the viewer’s attention? Be a little off the wall here.
- What text should you superimpose on top of the video?
- What screenshots do you need to grab to illustrate your point?
- What other “wild” elements could you throw in to maintain attention?
- Create short URLs so they’re easy to show on screen and remember
Then go for it. Make the videos.
Own Your Content because the Social Future is Volatile
You’ve no doubt heard that TikTok is a political hot potato right now and at some point could be banned in the US. While we doubt this will happen, the headlines are a good reminder to own your own content. If you don’t have back-ups of all the text you’ve published on your blog, Medium, LinkedIn, every social platform, and more, create it soon. The platforms may change in the future but the content is yours.
Adobe has created an app, Premiere Rush, which allows users to create TikTok-style videos on their phones then upload them to the platforms of their choice. You can change the aspect ratios and more. If you create your videos on TikTok then export them, they will bear a watermark and will be of lower quality than the original. Their gift to keep you loyal to their platform.
It’s your content. You can create the videos and find a place for the same material across social media, including the stalwart LinkedIn.
The First Thing to Do After Reading This Article
If you’re not already using TikTok for your brand, create an experiment. Task your social team to take one blog post and do what we did.